After last year’s disastrous apple crop left me with no choice but to forget about cider for a year, it was fantastic to see so much (admittedly late) blossom on the trees this spring (2013). The great news is that the pollination has been high too and huge numbers of little apples are growing.
When the ‘June Drop’ happens at the end of this month I expect to see my trees get rid of many of the small apples and I am fully expecting to have to help them by manually pulling a lot of little apples from the clusters to ensure we get a decent crop of good sized apples.
Although this is not strictly necessary if you are only growing for cider, we like to eat plenty of apples too so this is why we try and have harvests of nice tennis ball or larger sized fruits.
Now, a summer of watering, controlling weeds and pests, feeding with mulch and lots of tender loving care and with a little bit of luck on our side we may actually get to make some cider again this autumn.